Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Release of the Day: Espectrostatic - Escape From Witchtropolis

Alex Cuervo of The Hex Dispensers has a synth-spun side project called Espectrostatic and he just released his second album Escape From Witchtropolis. The name "Espectrostatic" is pretty perfect as a description. "Espectro" is Portuguese for "specter" and "static" is English for "static." You put the two together and have some ghost-riddled electronic jams. That's not to say that the music is straight up Goblin worship, either. Alex draws from the trans-global lineage of psychedelic music in addition to simple horror icons.

For instance, the title track relies on a motorik rhythm while a playfully sinister synthline dances on top. Part of it sounds like it could have been on a Neu! record, but only if Neu! were running from some ghouls as they were cranking out some kosmische shamanry. But not every track can be pinned down to the same influences. Like, let's take a gander at the first track, which is more or less the calm before the storm: "Removing the Bandages" is a piece dedicated to mood, and while electronic instrumentation is apparent, unfamiliar wafts of stringed accompaniment find their way in. I think I hear a cello and a violin, though to be fair, I don't have the best ear for figuring out arrangements, so there may be more.

So what does that mean for the record? Well, first off, it means that the record excels at making a hell of a lot of diverse sounds. It also means that it is absurdly fun to listen to. It really does sound like it could be the soundtrack to a great horror flick. And, to be perfectly clear, there is not even one dud on the record. All eleven tracks are evocative, strange pieces that blossom with repeated listens. It's a must-listen-to for anyone even remotely interested in the weird, the psychedelic, or the electronic.

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